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Must Read Advice: Arctic Weather

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Here in Illinois we are expecting a -54 F/-47 C windchill. If you are not from an area that is experiencing this arctic cold, don't be laughing at us for living here. We are here because we are made of strong stock. Actually, we were probably born here...and moving is such a chore...and for me, who wouldn't want to live in a state like Illinois that is so well run? Okay, even I couldn't say that last one seriously.

So yeah, it is going to be pretty darn cold. I have decided if my old dog doesn't want to go outside, I will deal with the clean up. Probably not enough time to pad train her. If you come visit me, bring hot chocolate and watch where you step.

If you are in the part of the world that is gearing up for record lows, here is some advice that I received this morning. Some I had heard of before. Some is new to me.

"Monday night through Thursday we will experience temperatures and wind chills that homes in our area heating systems have never experienced Heating systems are NOT designed for -20 to -30-degree temperatures with wind chills into -40 and up to -50+.

Homes will struggle to maintain temperature & the temperature WILL drop inside your home while the heating system is working at full capacity.

You need to take a few steps before the deep-freeze starts and also be diligent to protect your home over the next few days.

emoticon Please raise the temperature in your home on Monday night, 2 to 4 degrees above your normal setting. Get the core of your house warmer because it's going to drop no matter what over the next couple days.

emoticon Take all programmable thermostats out of setback mode and set on a permanent HOLD of 72-74 degrees until Friday.

emoticon If you have a furnace; replace the filter. MAKE SURE your filter is CLEAN or new.

emoticon Keep garage doors closed.

emoticon Limit opening exterior doors.

emoticon Make sure air vents and radiators are not blocked or obstructed by furniture or curtains.

emoticon If you have a 90%+ furnace, You must keep the exterior intake and exhaust clear of ice and snow. During these cold temperatures, ice can build up. A 90%+ furnace and/or boiler will have 2 white PVC pipes; an exhaust pipe and an intake pipe that are generally on the side or back of your home.

Avoid frozen pipes
emoticon The faucet furthest away from your water meter, leave on a slow trickle to avoid pressure building up within the pipes.
emoticon Open cabinet doors under sinks to allow warm air near water pipes.
emoticon WHIRLPOOL bathtubs. If you have a whirlpool tub with a tile deck built around it, locate the access panel and leave it open for the next few days. This will allow warm air to circulate under your tub and around the water pipes
emoticon Locate your main water shut off valve in your basement. If you do experience a burst water pipe, it will be extremely important to be able to turn the water off quickly."

Stay safe, warm, and cozy. If you are from a warm area, for once I may be jealous. Although, you won't have the opportunity to blow frozen bubbles like I will. I bought bubble soap last summer just so I can try this. Okay, now I am really excited thinking about it. Bring on the cold. I am ready!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Reminds me of all the reasons I moved to Florida (from New York). I don't miss any of that you just described. Of course we have our own cross to bear - hurricane season started 17 days ago and runs til November 30 and you can set your watch by the afternoon thunderstorms. You are probably enjoying great weather now.
    772 days ago
    I am months late reading your blog, but these are great suggestions. I am going to save them for next winter. I also live in IL - the "well run" state - NOT!
    794 days ago
    I am a little behind in my blog reading!

    Thanks for the great tips!
    872 days ago
    It was extremely cold here. Thank goodness for the new furnace we had to get in November!
    There was an alert sent over cell phones that one of the power companies was requesting people to set their thermostats back to 65 F to cope with the demand for resources. Our company already has a program in place where people signed up several years ago if they would let the company cut them back on power in times of high demand. We declined for health reasons.
    My niece tried to do the ice bubble thing but it didn't work.
    900 days ago
  • no profile photo CD22518161

    Thanks for this!
    907 days ago
    This is all excellent advice. Thank you. On a lighter note...next time we get below freezing I am totally testing out the bubbles!
    907 days ago
    Hope you got through it okay and everybody is safe and warm.
    907 days ago
    Stay safe and keep warm.

    Have you tried the ice bubbles yet????/


    Spring is just around the corner emoticon

    908 days ago
    Yes, we Canadians are used to this stuff. We didn't get an extreme cold warning today finally, but it was still bitter. Screaming barfies is the only way to describe our weather right now. This was a term the weather channel used, I had never heard of it before.
    Great advice there. Stay warm!
    910 days ago
    emoticon for the valuable information, Julia. I will be so glad when this is over. I don't mind Winter at all, but when it turns dangerous like it has this week, it scares me.
    Take care and stay safe.
    910 days ago
    Tell me why we live in Illinois? Latest Bill passed, "People in Illinois will be taxed 30% for each degree temperatures drop below freezing,"
    910 days ago
    I was wondering about everyone’s pets and how they get outside to potty. But, please stay safe and warm. That is frightening to those of us in warmer climates. Just can’t imagine. You are a Trojan Woman!
    910 days ago
    Stay safe and warm
    910 days ago
    Good tips - thanks for sharing especially as there may be many who have never experienced this type of cold and their homes are not built for it. We do not anticipate the extremes you mention reaching my area but it is expected that the wind chills will close the schools for a day. And to think I used to live where it could stay in the -20s (on the thermometer) for weeks on end... it's all a matter of being prepared.

    Be smart and safe everyone - and please don't forget to bring those pets inside!
    910 days ago
    Great info

    Yep day #2 of the arctic cold here!
    910 days ago
  • SPICY23
    Reminds me of when I lived in Wyoming - block heaters for the cars, and updates on the radio every morning of the wind chill factor and how long you could be outside, for any reason, before endangering your body parts. Winter is much tamer where I am now. Stay warm.

    Peace and Care
    911 days ago
  • BJAEGER307
    You made me smile, because I'm here in Michigan. We too are going to experience what you are. Thanks for all the tips, being from here I knew most of them but there were some new ones.

    Stay warm, use them blankets or throws and this shall pass too. Only 49 days until Spring! emoticon
    911 days ago
  • HOLLYM48
    I feel your pain! I wish I could hibernate for the next couple of days, but this too shall pass. We are in Minnesota and bracing for the -50 deg temps that are set to break records. I would rather not break this kind of record. But we will get through this because as you said, we are of hearty stock here in the midwest.
    Our house is set at 74 deg for the next few days and I will pray that our cars will start tomorrow morning. They are snuggled nicely in the garage, but it is still doggone cold out there.
    Have a warm and snuggly evening!
    911 days ago
    We’re off to Spain in the morning for some warmth. I’ll be sending warming thoughts your way.
    I DON’T like the cold!
    911 days ago
    I'm living it right along with you. Thank goodness I don't have livestock anymore, not even a dog or cat. We too live in an old country Sears house built in 1918, had updates of windows and siding but live on a what I affectingly call " Windy Warner's Hill"! We really get hit from a northwest wind. Only one evergreen to stop the wind. Enjoyed your tips , every little bit helps. Skeeter
    911 days ago
    'Keep garage doors closed' - We had trouble getting ours open this morning. It was frozen to the ground. We must have worked at it for 10 minutes. When we put it down again, we didn't let it go down all the way.

    I am sitting here listening to the wind. And, 'they' tell us it is supposed to be colder on Wednesday. Winter has arrived.
    911 days ago
    emoticon emoticon Have fun with the frozen bubbles. And stay safe.
    911 days ago
    THANK YOU FOR SHARING! Lots I hadn't heard before. I grew up in the Chicago area, but handled the snow and cold winds WAY BETTER as a kid. emoticon Southern Michigan now, and we're having the same deep freeze. Yeah, our dogs don't want to go out either. May this pass more quickly than predicted! I like the bubble trivia-- will buy some "for next time", but pray that will be several years off. emoticon , emoticon , and emoticon
    911 days ago
    Native Texan here. My brother moved up to Chicago about five years ago, and last week, he bragged about how much he prefers a Chicago winter to a Houston summer. And then y'all get hit with the coldest temperatures in 25+ years. So, if you're looking for someone to blame, it's all his fault! Shake your fist at the sky and cry out, "Curse you, JOSH!"
    911 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/29/2019 3:35:46 PM
    Yes, we are experiencing the same weather as you are. And my dog isn't all that excited about going out in this. I do have a sweater for her that she understands she has to put on before I will take her outside but once out there she finds her spot, does her business, and comes in - all in under a minute! Which is quite amazing for her because she likes to hang out and smell all around the yard!

    My husband has already done most of these things you've listed - although we've kept the heat at 68 degrees so I just turned it up a notch. I had a hard time sleeping last night because it was so hot in here! But I sure don't want to take any chances with this old house. We are lucky to live in an older home that was built with some pretty sturdy wood and brick and thank goodness we got new windows 3 years ago.

    Thanks for the tips. Stay in and stay warm. I went to Pilates at noon today - got a ride. Now we're in and don't have to leave again until at least Thursday. And if it's really -25 when I get up on Thursday I'll probably cancel Pilates and hunker down for another day!
    911 days ago
    I feel for you beloved and prayers in your safety and your family. I was raised in Il. Still have two brothers there, and not talking to me. Its ok. There jealous where I live.💚
    911 days ago
    Let me know how the frozen bubbles go. I'm so curious! emoticon
    911 days ago
    Ohhhhhhh no, shivering right along w/you. Our state (WI) was declared in a state of emergency due to the massive snow (we got 13 in, some areas got as much as 15 – and that was on top of the 15 in. already on the ground!)

    Hot chocolate is the beverage of choice, too, then switching to Hot Toddy’s! LOL

    Check, check and check. Think we're prepared. Well, don't know if you're EVER prepared for such brutal temps, but doing the best we can.

    Stay safe, stay warm.

    911 days ago
    Oh girlfriend we are made from tuff stock!! What with all the snow and cold stay safe and warm ....
    All the more reason I want to move to Texas, plus how it is such a well run state!! LOL
    911 days ago
    Thanks for sharing
    911 days ago
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